Australian Grand Prix – Race


There were a couple of penalties after yesterday’s Quali sessions: STR was given a 3-place grid drop for causing the collision with LAT, and ALB was “disqualified from the results of qualifying” but allowed to race.

So here’s the grid: LEC, VER, PER, NOR, HAM, RUS, RIC, OCO, SAI, ALO, GAS, BOT, TSU, ZHO, SCH, MAG, VET, LAT, STR, ALB

Mechanics making some last-minute changes on VER’s car on the grid
Air temperature 27°C; track 40°C – that’s a lot warmer than Quali
Front runners are on softs; SAI and ALO on hard tyres
LEC leads everyone away on the formation lap

01/58: HAM ahead of PER into Turn 1
RUS ahead of the McLaren pair too

02: LEC, VER, HAM, PER, RUS, NOR, RIC, OCO, GAS, ALO; SAI down to P14
SAI spins; he’s stuck in the gravel
Double yellows, but why no VSC?

03: VSC deployed
Replay shows SAI got close to the rear of SCH but lost it under braking, touched the grass, spun across the track and into the gravel

04[VSC]: SC deployed
STR pits; switches from hard to medium tyres

05[SC]: LEC, VER, HAM, PER, RUS, NOR, RIC, OCO, GAS, ALO; out: SAI
STR pits again; back onto hards

06[SC]: SC in at the end of this lap
LEC acts as SC; VER is reminded of the new rule which prevents him from running alongside P1 until they cross the line

08: PER fastest lap 1:23.957

09: RIC all over the rear of teammate NOR

10/58: LEC, VER, HAM, PER, RUS, NOR, RIC, OCO, GAS, ALO
PER inside HAM to steal P3

11: VET off, across the gravel, rejoins the track down in P19

12: RUS has DRS if he wants to attack teammate HAM
VER locks up; complains his front-left is giving up

13: LEC has 4sec lead over VER
SCH runs wide, across a rumble strip

14: LEC continues to open his lead
BOT closing on TSU; BOT locks up

15/58: LEC, VER, PER, HAM, RUS, NOR, RIC, OCO, GAS, ALO, TSU, BOT, MAG, ZHO, ALB, STR, VET, SCH, LAT; out: SAI

16: BOT takes P11 from TSU
MAG now all over TSU’s rear wing
MAG locks up, cuts across the grass, but recovers

18: OCO pits; rejoins P17

19: VER pits; hard tyres go on; rejoins P7
HAM closing on PER

20/58: LEC, PER, HAM, RUS, NOR, RIC, VER, OCO, GAS, ALO, GAS, BOT
PER pits; hards go on; rejoins P9

21: VER f/lap 1:23.2

22: RIC pits; NOR has already stopped
RIC exits right in front of ALB; the Williams nearly rear-ends the McLaren

23: LEC pits; rejoins still P1
HAM pits too; rejoins P5
VER f/lap 1:22.533
PER around the outside of HAM to take P5
SC deployed – VET has stopped on track

24[SC]: RUS pits; rejoins P3 thanks to the SC
Replay shows VET took too much kerb, lost the rear, spun across the track, into a wall, back across the track and rolled to a stop

25[SC]: LEC, VER, RUS, ALO*, PER, HAM, MAG*, NOR, RIC, ALB* (*yet to pit)
Just one marshal pushing VET’s car behind the wall

26[SC]: SC in at the end of this lap
Replay of TSU almost coming to a stop on the main straight and SCH almost ploughing through him!

27: VER all over LEC at the restart; RUS is hanging onto them

29 = half distance: MAG filling HAM’s mirrors

30/58: LEC, VER, RUS, ALO, PER, HAM, MAG, NOR, RIC, ALB, OCO, STR, BOT, GAS, TSU, SCH, ZHO, LAT; out: VET, SAI
PER takes P4 from ALO

31: HAM takes P5 from ALO

32: LEC f/lap 1:22.450

33: LEC f/lap 1:22.394
NOR attacking MAG

34: LEC f/lap 1:2
NOR takes P7
RIC now lining up the Haas

35/58: LEC, VER, RUS, PER, HAM, ALO, NOR, MAG, RIC, ALB
LEC has 4.5sec lead
PER closing on RUS
RIC takes P8 from MAG

36: Radio for RUS telling him “(tyre) management is more important than position”, i.e. let PER take P3 if keeping him behind is hurting the tyres
PER tales P3

37: LEC f/lap 1:21.986

38: VER f/lap 1:21.677
BOT looking for a way around STR

39: VER f/lap 1:21.291
VER pulls over, parks off track
VSC deployed

40/58[VSC]: LEC, PER, RUS, HAM, NOR, ALO, RIC, MAG, ALB, OCO, BOT, STR, GAS, SCH, ZHO, TSU, LAT; out: VER, VET, SAI
Cheap pit stop for ALO, MAG; rejoin P13 and P17 respectively
VSC ends

41: ALO takes a look at SCH
Replay of STR side-swiping BOT as the Aston Martin takes P9

42: Radio for PER telling him VER’s problem is not relevant

43: Incident involving STR and BOT “noted”
5-sec penalty for STR for weaving on the straight

44: Incident involving STR and BOT – no further action

45/58: LEC, PER, RUS, HAM, NOR, RIC, ALB, OCO, STR, GAS
Radio for STR telling not to weave when defending
ALO takes P12 from SCH

46: MAG takes P15 from TSU

47: STR has got a train of GAS, BOT, ALO, SCH, ZHO and MAG behind him

49: LEC has 15sec lead over PER

50/58: LEC, PER, RUS, HAM, NOR, RIC, ALB, OCO, STR*, GAS (*STR has 5-sec penalty to be added)
LEC f/lap 1:20.966
GAS steals P9 from STR

51: PER runs wide in the penultimate corner
STR weaving again as BOT closes
SCH runs wide; MAG takes P14

52: HAM has DRS behind teammate RUS
BOT takes P10 from STR
ZHO harrying ALO; takes P12
MAG takes P13

53: SCH closing on ALO
When will ALB make his mandatory pit stop?

54: LEC asks if he can go for fastest lap; told no, he already has it and no-one will challenge it
GAS runs wide; BOT takes P9

55/58: LEC, PER, RUS, HAM, NOR, RIC, ALB, OCO, BOT, GAS
ALO pits; mediums go on; rejoins P17
Radio from HAM complaining “You guys put me in a really difficult position”

56: ZHO takes P11 from STR

57: SCH takes P13 from teammate MAG

58 = final lap: LEC laps MAG
ALB finally pits for his required stop; rejoins P10

LEC takes the chequered flag, and f/lap 1:20.260
Provisional result: LEC, PER, RUS, HAM, NOR, RIC, OCO, BOT, GAS, ALB; ZHO, STR, SCH, MAG, TSU, LAT, ALO
DNF: VER, VET, SAI

[2022 calendar and line-up]